Archive for March 6th, 2007|Daily archive page

Nacho Macaroni and Cheese

This seems like a perfect fit. Found this on I Am Your Mom via Epicurious.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups small elbow macaroni
  • 1/2 cup bottled thick and chunky salsa verde (medium heat)
  • 1 cup (packed) fresh cilantro leaves
  • 3 cups (packed) coarsely grated sharp cheddar cheese (12 ounces), divided
  • 4 teaspoons all purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/4 teaspoon (scant) ground cloves
  • 1 cup large corn chips

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 425°F. Cook macaroni in large saucepan of boiling salted water until tender but still firm to bite, stirring occasionally, about 6 minutes. Drain.
  2. Meanwhile, blend salsa and cilantro in processor. Toss 2 cups cheese and flour in medium bowl to coat.
  3. Bring milk, cream, and cloves to simmer in large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add cheese mixture. Whisk until sauce is smooth, about 1 minute. Mix in macaroni; season with pepper.
  4. Spread half of macaroni mixture in 11 x 7-inch baking dish. Drop half of salsa mixture over in dollops. Sprinkle with 1/2 cup cheese. Top with remaining macaroni mixture and salsa mixture. Sprinkle chips over. Top with 1/2 cup cheese. Bake until heated through, about 10 minutes.

Cutting Board Art

Cutting Board

Charles & Marie always seems to find some really unique pieces, and these Wonderful Wooden Cutting Boards are no exception.

Prior to the engraving process each board is evaluated by the designers to determine the ideal position for any of the 6 different illustrations and which will have the best fit. Then they are hand positioned and sent to the laser engraving process after which they are oiled and ready to ship.

So each board is a one-of-a-kind piece of art and not a single board will be identical in terms of the art placement. If you’ve been looking for a really unique gift or a new cutting board, you might like these.

Baked Fontina Non-Fondue

I found this recipe on Leites Culinaria and it sounded way too good and too easy not to post it. I imagine you can really do this with all different types of cheese and toppings, but this way sounds delicious.

Ingredients

  • 1.5 lbs Italian Fontina, trimmed and cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1/4 c Olive Oil
  • 6 cloves Garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1 tblsp Thyme
  • 1 teasp Rosemary, chopped
  • salt & pepper
  • fresh bread

Directions

  1. Preheat the broiler.
  2. Toss fontina into cast iron skillet.
  3. Drizzle with oil, scatter spices and seasoning.
  4. Broil until bubbly, 6 to 7 minutes.
  5. Serve with bread for dunking.

Take a Hint

Hint

I’ll admit it. I’m addicted to iced tea. It’s what I order at every meal, and I can’t drink it without at least 3 Splenda’s. But on occasion, I want some water. And tap water won’t cut it.

Fiji and Voss are quite good, as is Evian and any other plain old bottled water, but sometimes those “natural spring waters” are just plain dull. They all end up tasting the same. And if you have to drink the same thing over and over again (unless its iced tea loaded with Splenda) it gets boring.

That’s where Hint comes in. Hint adds just a hint of flavor to their water. And their slogan “Drink Water, Not Sugar” pretty much sums these bottles up.

I found a few bottles at my local grocery store and was pleasantly surprised. I thought they’d taste like those flavored Propel waters or those new Aquafina waters, where it tastes like you’re drinking juice. But it in fact tastes like your drinking water, although it smells like the flavor on the bottle. An odd sensation at first, but quite refreshing after a few swigs.

The bottles are also a great size (not too big, not too small) and the flavors are really great, and include Peppermint, Apple, Mango Grapefruit, Pomegranate-Tangerine, Lime, Raspberry-Lime, Pear, Tropical Punch, Strawberry Kiwi, and Cucumber. I sampled Peppermint, Apple, Pear and Lime, and I think the Peppermint and Pear were my faves.

Head over to their site to find out where you can purchase Hint, or order it directly from their site.

Better Late Than Never!

I probably should’ve done this a month ago, but…

Welcome to Will Work For Food! WWFF is just over a month old, and so far so great! The site keeps growing every day and I’m trying to post as often as possible. Hopefully you’re enjoying yourself.

Please feel free to COMMENT and critique everything on the site. If you have an idea, suggestion or thoughts on a post, please let me know.

As you scroll down, you’ll notice posts on everything from restaurant reviews to kitchen gadgets to nicely designed product and anything else food or design related.

If you’re too busy to check the site everyday, you can get the RSS feed up above. Or you can subscribe by e-mail (check the link in the right side column). You can also use the little WidSet button and subscribe to WWFF via your mobile phone. I even created a logo that you can find in the ABOUT tab. If you can think of any other way I can get WWFF into your hands, please let me know!

Enjoy your stay. Drinks on me. Just clean up after yourselves!

Tea Forte Two

Tea Forte

Tell me these aren’t the nicest tea bags ever? You can’t, can you? Tea Forte might be a bit pricey, but you get what you pay for…unique flavors and packaging (I believe they had the triangular tea bag before Lipton got a hold of it). Check their site for pricing and for more great images.

Threadless and Food

Marshmallow Factory

Threadless is a great site for some really unique t-shirts made by ordinary people who know how to design. Some are funny some are friendly, some are dark and some are dorky. But if you need some new threads (whether you’re a man, woman or kid) and if you don’t want to spend a lot (less than $20 a shirt) Threadless is for you.

Enter the site and begin shopping using this link so they know you’re a friend of WWFF’s and they treat you right.

Check back often as tees change almost daily.

The design above is titled Marshmallow Factory and sells for $10. It was actually the first food related shirt I could find, but I kinda like it.

Bargain Hunting

The Bargainist is a great site for daily deals and sales. Problem is, these deals go quick. So check the site and check it often. Here’s a couple of food related deals from today, but they won’t last long.

Once on The Bargainist site, scroll down for a deal on the KitchenAid KSM150PSWH Artisan Series 5-Quart Mixer ($189), but no guarantees that deal is still good.

Happy Bargaining.

McD’s Debuts 100% Angus Burgers

I’m not really a fan of McDonald’s and I couldn’t tell you the last time I was there. But lately it seems McD’s is actually trying to improve their restaurants, probably due to the fast food industry movies, and it’s actually pretty interesting. Here’s the latest news in which they debut three all new 100% Angus beef burgers.

One of the creations McDonald’s is debuting next week is the Angus Deluxe, a “backyard style” burger with crinkle-cut pickles and red ring-shaped onions, as opposed to chopped onions and flat pickles served on other burgers, Frisbie said.

A new sesame seed “bakery-style roll” was also developed for the burgers by Brea, Calif.-based Fresh Start Bakeries Inc., a longtime bun supplier to McDonald’s.

The other two burgers are mushroom and Swiss cheese and a bacon cheeseburger. All three burgers sell for $3.99, on par with other fast food chains featuring premium burgers and about $1.60 more than a Big Mac.

Can’t wait to see the nutrition facts on those. If you’re interested in more fast food news, scroll down for yesterday’s McDonald’s post.

Anthony Bourdain and the Food Network

About a month ago, Chef Michael Ruhlman let Anthony Bourdain sit in as guest blogger. What happened next was a Bourdain rant and critique of every personality on the Food Network. I don’t totally disagree with him, but I find the Food Network to be pretty damn watchable. But that said, I find Anthony Bourdain’s show on the Travel Channel 10 times more watchable than anything on the Food Network. Here’s what Mr. Bourdain said…

I actually WATCH Food Network now and again, more often than not drawn in by the progressive horrors on screen. I find myself riveted by its awfulness, like watching a multi-car accident in slow motion. Mesmerized at the ascent of the Ready-Made bobblehead personalities, and the not-so-subtle shunting aside of the Old School chefs, I find myself de-constructing the not-terrible shows, imagining behind the scenes struggles and frustrations, and obsessing unhealthily on the Truly Awful ones. Screaming out loud at Sandra Lee in disbelief as she massacres another dish, then sits grinning, her face stretched into a terrifying rictus of faux cheer for the final triumphant presentation. I mourn for Mario..and Alton…Bobby and yes–even Emeril, nobly holding the fort while the TV empire he helped build crumbles like undercooked Bundt cake into a goo of Cheez Wiz around him.

Some thoughts on the Newer, Younger, More Male-Oriented, More Dumb-Ass Food Network:

ALTON BROWN: How did Alton slip inside the wire–and stay there all these years? He must have something on them. He’s smart. You actually learn something from his commentary. And I’ll admit it: I watch and enjoy Iron Chef America-in all its cheesy glory. Absolutely SHOCKED and thrilled when guys like Homaru Cantu show up as contestants–and delighted when Mario wins–again and again, forestalling his secretly long-planned execution. His commentary is mostly good. And that collar-bone snapping fall off the motorcycle on Feasting On Asphalt? Good television!

EMERIL: I’m actually grateful when I channel surf across his show. He’s STILL there–the original Behemoth. And I STILL find him unwatchable. As much mileage as I’ve gotten over the years, making fun of Emeril; he deserves a lot more respect than I’ve given him. He does run a very successful and very decent restaurant group. He is–in fact–a really nice guy. And-as much as I hate the show– compared to the current crop of culinary non-entities, he looks like Escoffier. He will probably be the last of the Real Chefs. I’m sure they’re growing future replacement options in petrie dishes somewhere, conducting Top Secret focus groups at suburban malls with their latest Bright Young Hopeful. I’m just glad he’s still there–a rebuke to the geniuses who brought us such Great Ideas as Dweezil and Lisa.

BOBBY FLAY: They seem to have noticed Bobby’s strong “negatives” among some viewer responses during focus groups–and decided to respond by subjecting poor Bobby to THROWDOWN; the object of which is to allow every web-fingered geek with a backyard grill–or half-mad muffin maker to proclaim, “I beat Bobby Flay at makin’ barbeque!” at the heart-warming end of show–before returning to tend their meth labs.. I watched poor Bobby battle to a draw recently in some bogus Southwestern “Chili Face-Off.” Now…does ANYONE actually believe that Bobby Flay can’t make a better chili than a supermarket ground beef bearing amateur? I don’t. It’s a cruel exercise in humiliation. A variation on “Dunk Bozo” or “Shoot The Geek,” at the carnival. And whatever I might have thought of Flay’s previous TV efforts, I find the network’s misuse of one of their founding chefs to be nauseatingly cynical. The conspiratorial-minded might be tempted to suspect this as yet another part of the Secret Plan to rid themselves of the annoyingly big ticket chefs–by driving Bobby to quit–or insane with misery. He may not be Mr. Cuddlesworth, but he’s a successful businessman and a good chef–and he doesn’t, after all, need this shit.

MARIO!
Oh, Mario! Oh great one! They shut down Molto Mario–only the smartest and best of the stand-up cooking shows. Is there any more egregiously under-used, criminally mishandled, dismissively treated chef on television? Relegated to the circus of Iron Chef America, where–like a great, toothless lion, fouling his cage, he hangs on–and on–a major draw (and often the only reason to watch the show). How I would like to see him unchained, free to make the television shows he’s capable of, the Real Mario–in all his Rabelasian brilliance. How I would love to hear the snapping bones of his cruel FN ringmasters, crunching between his mighty jaws! Let us see the cloven hooves beneath those cheery clogs! Let Mario be Mario!

THAT ACE OF CAKES GUY: Hey…He’s got talent! And..he seems to be a trained chef! And he’s really making food–and selling it in a real business! I think…I like it! If I have one reservation, it’s that I have no idea if the stuff actually TASTES good. It LOOKS really creative and quirky–and I’m interested but…I mean…it’s like construction going on over there from what we’re told and shown. One suspects that the producers don’t want to waste valuable time talking about anything so technical as food–on “Food” Network. I mean…what’s in those cakes, beneath the icing and marzipan and fondant? That said, it’s the only “kicky, new, cutting edge, in-your-face” hopeful they’ve managed to trot out of any quality in memory. Hope it lasts. Wait till they try and put the poor bastard on a pony–or do a “Tailgate Special” with the usual suspects. Or a “Thanksgiving Special” where he has to sit down with the bobbleheads and pretend to like it. On balance, it’s still probably the best new project they’ve come up with in a long, long time.

GIADA: What’s going on here!? Giada can actually cook! She was robbed in her bout versus Rachael Ray on ICA. ROBBED! And Food Net seems more interested in her enormous head (big head equals big ratings. Really!) and her cleavage–than the fact that she’s likeable, knows what she’s doing in an Italian kitchen–and makes food you’d actually want to eat. The new high concept Weekend Getaway show is a horrible, tired re-cap of the cheap-ass “Best Of” and “40 Dollar a Day” formula. Send host to empty restaurant. Watch them make crappy food for her. Have her take a few lonely, awkward stabs at the plate, then feign enjoyment with appropriately orgasmic eye-closing and moaning..Before spitting it out and rushing to the trailer. Send her to Italy and let her cook. She’s good at it.

RACHAEL: Complain all you want. It’s like railing against the pounding surf. She only grows stronger and more powerful. Her ear-shattering tones louder and louder. We KNOW she can’t cook. She shrewdly tells us so. So…what is she selling us? Really? She’s selling us satisfaction, the smug reassurance that mediocrity is quite enough. She’s a friendly, familiar face who appears regularly on our screens to tell us that “Even your dumb, lazy ass can cook this!” Wallowing in your own crapulence on your Cheeto-littered couch you watch her and think, “Hell…I could do that. I ain’t gonna…but I could–if I wanted! Now where’s my damn jug a Diet Pepsi?” Where the saintly Julia Child sought to raise expectations, to enlighten us, make us better–teach us–and in fact, did, Rachael uses her strange and terrible powers to narcotize her public with her hypnotic mantra of Yummo and Evoo and Sammys. “You’re doing just fine. You don’t even have to chop an onion–you can buy it already chopped. Aspire to nothing…Just sit there. Have another Triscuit…Sleep….sleep….”

PAULA DEEN: I’m reluctant to bash what seems to be a nice old lady. Even if her supporting cast is beginning to look like the Hills Have Eyes–and her food a True Buffet of Horrors. A recent Hawaii show was indistinguishable from an early John Waters film. And the food on a par with the last scene of Pink Flamingos. But I’d like to see her mad. Like her look-alike, Divine in the classic, “Female Trouble.“ Paula Deen on a Baltimore Killing Spree would be something to see. Let her get Rachael in a headlock–and it’s all over.

SANDRA LEE
: Pure evil. This frightening Hell Spawn of Kathie Lee and Betty Crocker seems on a mission to kill her fans, one meal at a time. She Must Be Stopped. Her death-dealing can-opening ways will cut a swath of destruction through the world if not contained. I would likely be arrested if I suggested on television that any children watching should promptly go to a wooded area with a gun and harm themselves. What’s the difference between that and Sandra suggesting we fill our mouths with Ritz Crackers, jam a can of Cheez Wiz in after and press hard? None that I can see. This is simply irresponsible programming. Its only possible use might be as a psychological warfare strategy against the resurgent Taliban–or dangerous insurgent groups. A large-racked blonde repeatedly urging Afghans and angry Iraqis to stuff themseles with fatty, processed American foods might be just the weapon we need to win the war on terror.

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